Disclaime: I don't own Degrassi.
Beta: thesidkid. Thank you!
The heavy, sweet smoke clung to the humid air. In only a few seconds, the smoke had found its way into Clare Edwards' nostrils, causing her to wrinkle her nose in disgust. With the heat and the smoke, her stomach grew uncomfortable and queasy. She pressed her lips together and continued to read her book. She was on a good part. Fabio was just about to admit his love for Susan. And he was going to sweep Susan off to a secluded island and declare his love for her. Clare sighed lightly and inhaled, the smoke traveling down her throat.
"That'll give you cancer." Clare sniffed, not taking her eyes away from her book, and flipped the page on her romance novel.
"And that'll give you sexual frustration." Eli retorted, pointing at her book. He inhaled the smoke in his lungs and hung his hand lazily out of the car, the cigarette drooping slightly.
Eli smirked, leaned back in his seat, and closed his eyes. He slowly put the cigarette between his lips and inhaled once again. Clare watched curiously and couldn't help but notice how...how...how good he looked. His hair was disheveled and messy. His lips were bruised and red, causing many fantasies to swirl around her once-innocent mind. The cigarette hung from his mouth, dangerously drooping, but he didn't give a damn. And that made Clare shiver with excitement that she never knew existed.
Clare shook her head violently, trying to clear her impure thoughts. She hated that she was dropping her morals for a boy. A boy who drove a hearse and cursed like it was his job. A boy who made her feel things that no one ever could. A boy who made her forget about how she used to lecture about how she would never date anyone who would ever put such a thing in their mouth. A boy that made her feel alive.
But now, watching Eli smoke the disgustingly white cigarette, Clare Edwards couldn't help but feel even more attracted to him. She wanted to run her fingers through his hair and kiss him. She wanted him to want her, because she definitely wanted him. Wanted him more than she ever wanted anything. Ever.
The cigarette sat between Eli's pointer and middle fingers, resting until he wanted to take another drag. Clare fidgeted around and set down her romance novel, dog-earing the page. She placed it on her lap and pressed her lips firmly together, trying to avoid speaking.
"Penny for your thoughts, Edwards?" Eli muttered, after she had sighed twice.
"Can I try that?" Clare blurted out and her eyes widened, but she sat up tall and looked directly at him.
"This?" He asked, opening his eyes in surprise, and wiggling the cigarette around between his two fingers.
"It'll cause cancer." Eli replied stupidly, looking at her blankly, still trying to see if she was serious.
"So will breathing."
Eli chuckled darkly and sat up, a smirk planted on his bruised lips. Clare bit her lip at the sight and caught her breath.
"Now, you'll just try mine, okay? I highly doubt that you will want more. And honestly, have you seen the prices for these things. It's crazy, I tell you. Absolute bullshit." Eli shook his head in frustration and glanced at Clare, who was just watching the cigarette in his hand, "Hey, you okay?" Eli whispered tenderly, reaching over and brushing a finger over Clare's cheek, resulting in a blush from her.
"Will I die?" Clare blurted out, unable to contain it. She squeezed her eyes shut and groaned silently at her stupidity.
Eli threw his head back and howled, his shaggy hair shaking with every laugh he let out. Tears streamed down his cheeks.
"Oh, I'm glad that I'm your source for laughter." Clare huffed and opened her book back up, a scowl on her pink lips.
"Edwards, Edwards, God! You kill me sometimes," Eli chuckled a few more times and glanced at Clare, who was pretending to read her book, "Look, I'm sorry. It's just that you're...cute and innocent. And I can't help but lov-like that." Clare glanced up from her novel and set it back down, turning back to Eli.
"Cute and innocent?" Clare asked, blushing.
"Don't let it go to your head," Eli muttered, a blushing forming on his face too, "Now, do you want to try this or not?"
Clare nodded violently and then smiled apologetically, "But I don't know how to."
Eli smiled, "Alright, first, the way to start off is to inhale slowly with the cigarette in your mouth. Get a little bit of smoke in your mouth and then fully inhale with your lungs, which I do that by inhaling through my nose. And I suggest you only inhale a little bit. I don't want you to choke...or die," He winked at her and then became serious, "Are you ready?"
Clare smiled in confirmation and closed her eyes, Eli slowly moving his hand towards her. "Open your mouth," Eli instructed, "And only take a little bit."
She tried to remember desperately what he had said. But once the cigarette was between her lips, she forgot everything. Inhaling only a little bit, like Eli said, the smoke swirled dangerously around her mouth, making her wince in displeasure. Doing the rest of Eli's instructions that she had began to remember, she inhaled through her nose.
Without realizing that the cigarette was gone from her mouth, Clare sat up in surprised and was semi-surprised to see that her lungs were still intact. She opened her eyes widely and looked up to see Eli. Smoking the cigarette. Like nothing happened. She watched Eli inhale the smoke and wondered if she looked like that. Like she knew what she was doing.
"I did it." Clare announced triumphantly and Eli nodded and smirked.
"You did, you did. But I want you to promise me something," Eli leaned into Clare suddenly, her heart beating fast, "Please don't ever try this again. And I know I'm not like Fabio and I can't sweep you off to a romantic island just to make you promise me that."
"Fabio? How do you know about him?" Clare wondered out loud, her voice becoming a whisper as Eli leaned in closer to her.
"I was curious as to what you were reading," Eli shrugged and moved so he was looking directly into her eyes, "But, just, please just promise me that you won't try this again. You're too pure and beautiful to do this."
"Beautiful?" Clare whispered, her heart beat spiking up dangerously.
"So completely beautiful." Eli muttered, before kissing her in a way that he had wanted to for months.
And as he kissed her, Clare ran her fingers through his shaggy hair and licked his bruised lips and tasted the sweet smoke on his breath. And when he nibbled on her bottom lip, Clare groaned, and she wasn't even embarrassed.
Sure, Elijah Goldsworthy wasn't Fabio. He wouldn't declare his love for her in the way that they did it in movies. Eli wouldn't talk like a gentlemen and take her to fancy parties. He wouldn't drive a Volvo and introduce her to his upper-class parents.
But he would tell her that he loved her in his own way, with the glances that he would send towards her. And sure, Clare wasn't too fond of some of his language, but she liked how he didn't see her as a Saint. He didn't see her as someone who he couldn't curse around. As someone who he couldn't be himself around. Fancy parties didn't even enter her mind anymore. And she had began to love Morty more than she could ever love a silver Volvo. And Bullfrog and CeCe? She couldn't even describe them. But they were like her second parents.
Keeping that in mind, Clare dropped the romance novel on the ground, her lips still attached to Eli's, and kicked the book underneath the seat.
Because, and she couldn't deny it, Elijah Goldsworthy wasn't Prince charming.
But he was real. And Clare Edwards couldn't ask for anything more.
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